Some Providers have been taken by surprise when they have received satisfactory results from Care Quality Commission inspections in the time up to mid 2014 and have been given Improvement Required or Inadequate ratings in more recent inspections.
Changes to the Inspection Process from October 2014
The CQC have changed policy with regard to inspection following the Health & Social Care Act 2008 Regulated Activities – Regulations 2014.
This has meant that Providers receive a much more intensive inspection of one day carried out by 2 inspectors or 2 days if carried out by one inspector.
Obviously, this means that the 5 Domains of the KLOE (key lines of enquiry) are followed carefully and any shortfalls identified need to be addressed within the time-scales they give.
Warnings, Enforcement and De-Registration
Failure to do this will result in warnings and depending on the seriousness of the shortfalls – go to an enforcement process with closure of a service that is seen as non-compliant.
Do not be complacent if you have received notice of this type because the Care Quality Commission is using its powers to de-register what they consider failing organisations who do not adequately respond to their requirements.
They have a Legal Section to advise them and once the service has been seen as non-compliant with an overall rating of Improvement Required or Inadequate – it is advisable to rectify the shortfalls without argument.
Provider Information Returns (pre-Inspection Information sent to you)
When you receive your Provider Information Return – please think carefully about the information you provide because it will be checked against the service when the CQC visit you. Remember, they may already hold information regarding your service – so if you claim to have no complaints or no safeguarding issues – they may already have evidence that this is not the case.
Triggers to CQC Inspection
You will normally be due an inspection in 2015/16 if you have not received an inspection in 2014.
Triggers that receive a CQC inspection will follow if:
- There are already concerns in general and complaints are received (even anonymous ones)
- There are safeguarding issues reported that they consider requires their attention
- You have not appointed a Registered Manager within a reasonable period of time
- There are deaths or serious incidents that they consider requires their attention
- There is a general lack of confidence in your service that they consider requires their attention
The CQC now holds meetings at regular intervals with commissioners to discuss the performance of providers.
Advice to Registered Providers
Have a look at the CQC website and check out Companies providing a similar service to your own who have received Good, Improvement Required or Inadequate ratings and read the reports.
It will show you how the CQC have come to their decisions and give you an idea of what they look for. You will see that their findings are evidence based and interviews with Staff, Relatives and the Service Users themselves carry weight and are actually quoted.